Germanys Jews oppose immigration

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BONN (JTA) — The German Jewish community says it opposes immigrants from the former Soviet Union coming to Germany under the rubric of Judaism when their Jewish background is questionable.

"I have nothing against opening Germany's doors to refugees," said Ignatz Bubis, head of the Central Council of Jews in Germany.

But, "I don't want anyone blaming us for unlawful immigration."

Bubis made the remarks at a news conference last week.

Of the 100,000 people in the former Soviet Union who have applied for visas to Germany as Jewish refugees, some 40,000 have arrived. Bubis said only half are halachically Jewish, meaning they have a Jewish mother.

As Jewish immigration rises, some 50,000 people are registered members in the Jewish community of Germany, Bubis said.

Bubis also praised measures against neo-Nazis, saying they have led to the drop in power of extreme-right political parties.

But he said the amount of anti-Semitic propaganda has continued to rise.

Although Germany bans the publication of anti-Semitic propaganda, material is published outside its borders and shipped in, Bubis said.

He has seen anti-Semitic pamphlets published under the pretext of animal protection, accusing Jews of brutally slaughtering animals by "breaking their limbs in order to suck their blood."

Bubis also likened the persecution of Bosnian Muslims to that of the Jews in Nazi Germany before 1939.